@diehardpinball Thanks for the kudos as well as the constructive feedback. I appreciate both.
Thank you for being an active and vocal participant in the crowd. I loved the atmosphere and crowd participation. WOW!
Sorry to hear, but understandable. We’ll be revisiting how we handle having a Classics side tourney. I’m even toying with removing it entirely, but based on the overwhelming and growing # of participants, it’s clear that having an additional tourney is desirable… but it was never my intent to have MORE people in that one than the Main. I intentionally kept it a low $ entry (trying to attract LESS $$ for it), and based on original design (16 finalists) it isn’t even 100% TGP. The goal was to have another tourney option for both those players that show up at the event who didn’t have a spot in Wizards, and those Wizards players that would rather spend more time competing than checking out the Show.
Limited Entry is also an option. In theory, I like the balance of the Main being Limited and the Side being Unlimited. But in reality, the Side turns out to be Limited due to time and queue length.
Sorry that this was a let-down. But I think this was limited to major issues on 3 pins out of 22. And I share in your disappointment on those few that were not in the shape that was expected. We’ll be discussing ideas/steps of how we can mitigate this from happening in the future.
F-14 R saucer/VUK was a nightmare, and chattering upper R flipper that had to be fixed twice.
Mars Trek not awarding Double Bonus with E-K was another one that really ticked me off, but we didn’t catch it until mid-way through qualifying, and confirmed it hadn’t been working for anyone. MT was a pin that arrived much later than expected on Thursday night, and we only had time to flipper test, switch tested, and score reel test. The owner ran into logistics issues, but let us know about the extra 10K it was awarding in bonus on every ball, which wasn’t an issue. I didn’t think to test the E-K double bonus logic with the little time we had.
Cleopatra started doing the score skipping from P1 to P4 reel during qualifying, and after quick assessment from an EM expert, they said the fix would require a complete replacement of player stepper/relay, so we decided to have the score be added from P4 reel, because it still scored correctly in total on the rare occasions it did this.
In terms of setup: what specifics on game setup would have been better? Always looking to try and improve here. We had a list of setups that we followed based on our personal experience as well as papa.org game notes, and tweaked them based on how the pins were playing.
We’ve received both negative and positive feedback on being in the 3 connected conference rooms vs the portion of the ballroom we had in prior years. I agree that it was cramped in areas, and felt cramped. Thanks for the ideas. Yes, one option we’ll be looking at is having all the pins on the one external wall – though this would cost us our audience viewing area in proximity to the pins that made for the electrifying finals fun. I don’t foresee us regaining a comparable space in the ballroom due to the popularity and growth of the Festival.
Good idea about registration desk being in the hallway – something to consider. Although it would mean having to move it each morning an evening, because the room gets locked up overnight, while the hallway is only patrolled by security. And there’s no way I’m leaving my two personal laptops in a hallway.
As your feedback already mentioned: one of the difficulties a Festival tourney faces is dealing with contributed exhibitor pins from all over the state of TX (and surrounding states), with limited time to get 22 pins ready over a span of roughly 4-10 hours. The way that we’ve identified to handle this is by putting the pins through the paces of having people play them in a competitive situation, in terms of ensuring everything works, and holds up over a couple hours of play (at least on the few that were played as part of the event). Other major tournaments also use this approach, but TPF doesn’t have the luxury of holding such competitive play bullet-proofing over many weeks leading up to the event, so we use the option available to us. And as mentioned by others, it helped identify a whole host of changes that needed to be made: Demo Man flippers had to be rebuilt, F-14 saucer had to be tweaked (which ended up being a recurring them), Cleo needed to be changed to 3-ball because it played too long as 5-ball, Iron Maiden had Mummy ball registration issues, numerous tilt settings (and some tilts that weren’t registering consistently that needed capacitor replacement), etc, etc, etc. Had we not had people playing them, there would have been a greater number of condition/setup issues.
Thanks again for attending, sharing your enthusiasm with others, and taking the time to provide feedback.